N.B. artist takes first place in international competition for Indigenous artwork
Published Tuesday, September 10, 2019 11:01AM ADT
Last Updated Tuesday, September 10, 2019 11:27AM ADT
An artist from New Brunswick's Tobique First Nation has taken first place at an international competition for his Indigenous artwork.
Shane Perley-Dutcher combines inspiration from his indigenous heritage with modern soldering, engraving and hammering, crafting pieces out of materials like silver at his home studio in Fredericton.
Perley-Dutcher recently won the sculpture category at the internationally-renowned Santa Fe Indian Market in New Mexico, with one of his traditional woven baskets.
“I've looked at their stuff for a long time, followed some of the artists that go there, and represented the highest and most prestigious show in the world that supported Indigenous artwork,” says Perley-Dutcher.
Perley-Dutcher studied at the New Brunswick College of Craft and Design. His former teacher, Brigitte Clavette, says she is not surprised by his success.
“Silversmithing and jewelry-making is much more contemporary for us,” says Clavette. “He's bringing that with a new flair; the pieces are very classy.”
The award-winning artist credits his community and his mother with exposing him to Indigenous art at an early age.
“She was a single mother. She basically decided, with limited means, she was only able to get me involved with so many things,” says Perley-Dutcher.
His mother turned to friends, who were local artists, to educate and guide her son.
Though his art has drawn international acclaim, Perley-Dutcher says his biggest fans are his daughters. He hopes his work will teach them about their culture and also the importance of a strong work ethic.
“When you put so much work into one goal, to actually achieve it, it's an enriching experience,” he says.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Jessica Ng